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April 06, 2014

Witten, at TMS to drive pace car, says Romo 'right on track to come back better than ever, I assume'

Jason Witten, who took in the Final Four with Tony Romo on Saturday night, said Romo is “right on track to come back better than ever, I assume.”

Witten said Romo is moving and recovering well from back surgery in December, which left him unable to play in the Week 17 game against Philadelphia for the NFC East championship.

“Seems like he’s excited to get back and get healthy,” Witten said Sunday at Texas Motor Speedway, where he was scheduled to drive the pace car for the start of the Duck Commander 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup race. “And I think all of us are eager to get going. I can’t speak for him, but I think everything’s on track. We’re excited for the offseason. We have a lot to prove. We know exactly what we have to do.”

Witten and Romo watched the Final Four games from a suite at AT&T Stadium.

“He was pulling for Wisconsin pretty hard, being from there,” Witten said. “What a game, man. You could tell a lot of people in his family were cheering for Wisconsin.”

Witten’s appearance at TMS is part of a campaign with the March of Dimes and driver Denny Hamlin.

“It’s pretty special,” Witten said. “Obviously, playing a role in the community is huge. What the No. 11 car is doing with the March of Dimes is something I completely support. I think it’s great. A few years back, I had the opportunity to be a part of it. What FedEx and Denny are trying to do, I think it’s great. It’s great to make a difference like that.”

Witten was cleared by NASCAR to drive the pace car after a training session with former racer Brett Bodine.

“Just got a little tutorial this morning,” Witten said. “Talked about the rain, unfortunately. But I’m excited. Obviously, I’m a race fan. It’s pretty exciting to see those guys get started. Hopefully I don’t mess it up and keep it going on the track.”

The pace car is a Chevy SS.

“It was a little tight for me, getting in there,” he said.

Witten said he couldn’t help but grow up a race fan near Bristol, Tenn., one of NASCAR’s famed tracks.

“You have a competitive nature, to find that edge, all the tricks in the trade that go into making you elite, and that’s what these guys are,” he said. “I respect that from them. I know a few of them. Just appreciate how much they put into it. Just excited to be part of this day. Hopefully we get a good race.”

-- Carlos Mendez

Twitter @calexmendez

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